Friday, April 29, 2016

Andrew and Noah

Andrew and Noah are designing the NEW Suit, an exoskeleton to be used for a variety of reasons like helping less able people do things they could not previously do or making the wearer stronger. Yesterday, they went to midtown St. Louis to a mechanical design shop. They talked to some of the designers there about their idea and got some feedback. Check out Andrew's blog to see his perspective of the trip and some great photos and videos that he uploaded. Take a look at Noah's blog to get his views about the trip and see some of his photos too.

Podcast: Harmonized Learning - Episode 54

In this episode, we talk about the upcoming Student TED Talks, Rosalie's published novel, a cool field trip that two of our boys took yesterday as a part of their project, and upcoming PD sessions. Follow us on Twitter (@dayankee and @melissahellwig4) and subscribe to this podcast on iTunes.

Monday, April 25, 2016

The Island by Rosalie Garzia

Last year, Rosalie decided that for her 20% Time project, she wanted to write a book. She blogged about her quest to create a story that was engaging enough to draw readers in and keep them interested until the end. This is what all writers attempt to do. She is a very good writer. Rosalie excelled on the writing assignments in English class. She was imaginative, creative and communicated in a narrative that was descriptive and robust. We were confident that if she pursued her dream to publish a novel, she would!

During her Student TED Talk at the end of last year, Rosalie talked about the progress she made, the drafts she'd written and the struggles she had during the writing process. It was an honest assessment of where she was in May 2015. She said at the end of her talk that she wanted to continue to write the novel and get it published. She was determined.

A week or so ago, another district teacher tweeted to Melissa (@melissahellwig4) that Rosalie did indeed publish her novel. She was able to finish the writing and editing and also go through the publishing process. The publishing process is a learning curve unto itself.

This is the whole point of 20% Time. We want kids to find their passions and pursue them even when they are not in school. The work of 20% Time should be something that kids want to do, not have to do. In this case, Rosalie has a passion for writing. 20% Time was the way for her to pursue her passion in the space of a classroom environment as well as beyond the classroom environment. We are supremely excited for Rosalie as she begins her career as a published author. We are so very proud of her.

Monday, April 18, 2016

Podcast: Harmonized Learning - Episode 53

In this episode, we talk about Checkpoint Assignment 1, blogging and our upcoming Student TED Talks. Subscribe to our podcast on iTunes and follow us on Twitter (@dayankee and @melissahellwig4).

Thursday, April 7, 2016

Reaching Out

When Melissa and I travel around sharing our 20% Time philosophy and program, we meet many dedicated teachers who want to take on this kind of classroom transformation. One such talented educator, Christine Zirges @christinezirges, took our message to heart and has started spreading the 20% Time message in her own school. She has partnered with teachers in her school to make the environment one that is receptive to this kind of learning.

Last week, she tweeted a picture of herself and another teachers holding copies of our book, Cultivating Genius. The rush we got when we saw these amazing educators with our book was awesome and surreal. We appreciate the warm reception for our book and hope that it helps transform more classrooms across the country. We are humbled and amazed at the work that so many teachers are doing on a daily basis.